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Click on a thumbnail picture below to see the full size version. 189 Entries.
Friday, March 12 View Page
And so begins the 2021 marathon. This afternoon I hooked up my plow and turned over the soil in the main pumpkin patch.
 
Friday, March 12 View Page
Before picture of the 6700 square foot patch.
 
Friday, March 12 View Page
The sandy loam is looking very beautiful and I have a feeling it will be an auspicious year!
 
Saturday, March 13 View Page
Round 1 of the tomatoes are 2 weeks since planting. In the background are a couple practice watermelon grafts. I'll be greenhouse growing big tomatoes again this year, like I did year before last. They're going to have quite the elaborate setup.
 
Saturday, March 13 View Page
Round 2 of giant tomatoes went into the incubator today!
 
Saturday, March 13 View Page
Frost on the pumpkin patch this morning!
 
Wednesday, March 17 View Page
I got my patch amendments today! I'm taking a different approach this year and using a lot of slow release organics.
 
Sunday, March 21 View Page
100% germination on my giant tomato lineup this year: 5.58 Tobeck, 8.83 LaRue, 18# Spaziani, 6.38 LaRue, 6.48 LaRue, 9.44 LaRue, 5.62 LaRue, 9.65 Porkchop, 7.36 LaRue, 8.01 Karkos.
 
Sunday, March 21 View Page
100% germination on my giant tomato lineup this year: 5.58 Tobeck, 8.83 LaRue, 18# Spaziani, 6.38 LaRue, 6.48 LaRue, 9.44 LaRue, 5.62 LaRue, 9.65 Porkchop, 7.36 LaRue, 8.01 Karkos.
 
Monday, April 12 View Page
Back from a week in Hawaii, and it's go time!
 
Monday, April 12 View Page
Main patch with room for 5 pumpkins and 1 squash.
 
Monday, April 12 View Page
Right side of the auxiliary patch for 2 field pumpkins, 1 squash, 2 long gourds, 1 watermeand 1 bushel gourd!
 
Tuesday, April 13 View Page
The left side of the auxiliary patch for 12 tomatoes in the hoop house and 4 marrows!
 
Wednesday, April 14 View Page
Seed line up varsity: 2552 Mendi, 2183 Mendi, 2241 Vangeel, 2114 Wallace, 2145 McMullen, *1935.5 Jutras, and *1109 Jutras. Backups: 2040 Vanheuckelom, 2283 Barlow/Jacobus, 2054 Wallace, 1931.5 Sperry, 1930 Jutras.
 
Friday, April 16 View Page
Greenhouse building day in the main patch: 3 20x25' hoops for 6 pumpkins/squash.
 
Tuesday, April 20 View Page
Digging holes for 7 soil heating cables is definitely no fun. :(
 
Wednesday, April 21 View Page
100% germination. Everyone looking good except my 3 Belgium seeds that are a little funky.
 
Wednesday, April 21 View Page
Look what came in the mail for me!!! Lots of hardware from the Pacific Northwest Giant Pumpkin Growers!
 
Friday, April 23 View Page
The Tomato Temple is open for business! 20x 25' with 3 rows of 4 tomatoes.
 
Friday, April 23 View Page
Tomatoes got to spend the night outside, then planting in the morning!
 
Saturday, April 24 View Page
The 2021 lineup: 9.44 LaRue 7.38 LaRue 8.83 LaRue 5.62 LaRue 5.62 LaRue 8.01 Udo 9.65 Porkchop 8.83 LaRue 8.44 LaRue 9.65 Porkchop 8.83 LaRue 5.58 Tobeck
 
Saturday, April 24 View Page
All planted! Cloudy and rain, but 78 in the tomato temple!
 
Saturday, April 24 View Page
Despite the rain, the show must go on! No pain, no gain. Maybe after dinner I'll get the ends up and drag extension cards to plug in all the soil heating cables.
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
The babies got planted out this evening.
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
I'm glad for such nice back ups, because both my 2241 Vangeel seedlings look awful and aren't going in my patch this year. The best Sperry or Jutras will battle for the spot!
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
Mendi seedlings are looking good.
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
Going to grow the 1935 Jutras squash again!
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
The 2552 Mendi seedling on the right was first to emerge and has enormous cotyledons, but its true leaves are all bunched up, so maybe the other one will be better. We shall see.
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
The 2114 is my most pretty baby.
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
I'll plant these squash in the auxiliary patch tomorrow.
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
Both of these seedlings had issues...boo.
 
Monday, April 26 View Page
Goodnight from the tobeck patch...
 
Saturday, May 1 View Page
Happy May Day! I filed, soaked and will plant these long gourd and bushel gourd seeds tonight. I'll wait a couple more weeks until field pumpkins, marrows, and I'm thinking MAYBE of doing a Cinderella style smooth, orange pumpkin to take down to Half Moon Bay for their famous beauty contest. I'm not an orange grower, so I'll need to do some quick research on proven orange...hmmmm....but if I don't, then I'll do a 4th marrow. Decisions, decisions!
 
Tuesday, May 11 View Page
Thanks to Joe Ailts I have this awesome seed to grow a really great contender for HMB! I planted it late tonight.
 
Wednesday, May 12 View Page
Today I got one step closer to getting my watermelon planted! As soon as the co2 generator is hung, it'll be ready to go!
 
Friday, May 14 View Page
First mega of the season on the 9.65 Porkchop!
 
Wednesday, May 19 View Page
Watermelon planted out. Started my field pumpkins and marrows, as well as a new big orange pumpkin. The Ailts seed didn't want to leave the seed coat and after an assist, isn't thriving unfortunately. I found something in my stash that looked promising.
 
Friday, May 21 View Page
This is an older field pumpkin seed that I chose because it came from one of my own seeds: 157.5 Rosquita UOW (117.5 Tobeck x open). The 117 Tobeck was an unassuming small, round ball with a very long, cool stem that went WAY heavy. In fact it barely had a cavity at all! So I'll be the first to grow this old one, and hopefully I can get my 2013 state record back!
 
Saturday, May 22 View Page
2 days after set, the 9.65 is looking promising!
 
Tuesday, May 25 View Page
Looks like both my 1935 Jutras squashes are going double on me. The bigger one split, so I was able to eliminate one of the vines. We shall see how they both grow before I cull. Everything is culled to the 1 strongest plant now, except the 1835 and 1108 Jutras squashes. No rush.
 
Wednesday, May 26 View Page
6 days after set and she's fattening up! 9.65 Porkchop. I renamed the hoophouse Mega Mart, because there are megas EVERYWHERE!!!!
 
Wednesday, May 26 View Page
That should be 1935 and 1109 Jutras squashes.
 
Friday, May 28 View Page
First baby of the season showing on the 2552 Mendi.
 
Friday, May 28 View Page
Planted out the marrows, field pumpkins and long gourds today. They've been hardening off the last few days at the Mega Mart. It's a mild day with some cloud cover and occasional sunbreaks, and an auspicious moon for planting out. Each got 4 WOW starter packs, Mychorrhiza, and Azos along with a ring of slug bait. Here are a couple Baggs marrows. We will see which one is the better grower.
 
Friday, May 28 View Page
Jack convinced me to plant my own marrow seed, so I did, and its the best looking, most rooted of them all! I double planted it with a nice Baggs seed. We will see who grows the best.
 
Friday, May 28 View Page
A couple 220 Baggs seedlings here to battle it out in my final marrow patch.
 
Friday, May 28 View Page
Long gourds got planted out today and I've got two spots on my trellis. I started 2 155 Lazic seeds, and 2 of the big LeBlanc seeds from last season. Both Lazics look way better, so I'm going with them in both spots. Here's one:
 
Friday, May 28 View Page
Here's the other long gourd:
 
Friday, May 28 View Page
Growing across from the other field pumpkins are a couple of Mark Baggs'. One if these will grow in the opposite direction.
 
Friday, May 28 View Page
And finally planted out today is Bob. That's for Big Orange Beauty! This seed is from a local grower: 663 Pumilia from 2019 that won the Howard Dill award at Central Market weighoff. It is the 1624 D. Gantner x self. There is a lot of beautiful orange lineage in this pumpkin! I'm not an orange grower, but I'm going to give it a go this year and take it down to California. The plant will only get 300 square feet, but I'm not going for size. I'd be happy with a 500-700 pound smooth, orange Cinderella.
 
Sunday, May 30 View Page
1109 Jutras squash
 
Sunday, May 30 View Page
2145 McMullen
 
Sunday, May 30 View Page
2183 Mendi
 
Sunday, May 30 View Page
2542 Mendi
 
Sunday, May 30 View Page
2114 Wallace
 
Sunday, May 30 View Page
1935 Jutras squash
 
Sunday, May 30 View Page
1930 Jutraa
 
Monday, May 31 View Page
11 days old on 9.65
 
Monday, May 31 View Page
Lots of selection at the Mega Mart! 11 out of 12 plants have a nice megabloom going or pollinated!
 
Tuesday, June 22 View Page
Pollinations started today: 1935 Jutras squash x 1109 Jutras squash and the 1980 Jutras x 2114 Wallace. Tomorrow I'll have 5 to pollinate, then all giants will have a set!
 
Wednesday, June 23 View Page
1109 Jutras squash x 1935 Jutras squash
 
Wednesday, June 23 View Page
2114 Wallace x self
 
Wednesday, June 23 View Page
2145.5 McMullen x 2552 Mendi
 
Wednesday, June 23 View Page
2183 Mendi x 2145.5 McMullen
 
Wednesday, June 23 View Page
2552 Mendi x self
 
Wednesday, June 23 View Page
It feels so great having my main pollinations all done before the heat wave in a few days and my upcoming championship horse show out of town!
 
Thursday, June 24 View Page
It's HOT, but I've got plenty of shade cloth.
 
Friday, June 25 View Page
Jack even loaned me acouole big pieces! It's a good thing too: 116 degrees out! The sand is radiating 128!
 
Sunday, June 27 View Page
Here's my 9.44 LaRue plant. The tomatoes are getting misted periodically and fanned to survive the heat. They've got shade cloth too.
 
Saturday, July 3 View Page
Meanwhile Agate and I are having the best show of our lives at the Region 5 Championships!
 
Sunday, July 4 View Page
Happy 4th of July from the 1109!
 
Monday, July 5 View Page
Here's my baby on the 1109 Jutras. It seems to have fared the heatwave unscathed.
 
Monday, July 5 View Page
View of the field pumpkins next to the 1109.
 
Monday, July 5 View Page
View of the field pumpkins next to the 1109.
 
Tuesday, July 6 View Page
Heatwave has passed, and shade cloth removed. Now I wait to see who will possibly abort now.
 
Saturday, July 10 View Page
Here's my watermelon plant. The ungrafted one is 100x more vigorous than the grafted. Both just sat there until the heat wave, which FINALLY made them grow. Even though I know I don't really have a shot at watermelon, a true master gardener will try all 8 of the recognized giants!
 
Sunday, July 11 View Page
A peek at my bushel gourd
 
Sunday, July 11 View Page
Long gourds are beginning their climb up the trellis.
 
Sunday, July 11 View Page
My 3 marrow plants are exactly on pace!
 
Monday, July 12 View Page
1935 Jutras pollinated on July 5th is growing so fast, it's going to break if it doesn't lay down. My earlier set aborted in the heat.
 
Monday, July 12 View Page
See that crack? Scary! I need to turn the vine completely upside down before I lose the fruit!
 
Monday, July 12 View Page
I totally flipped the main vine around, removed some secondaries and got the squash to lay down on a 5x5 sheet of plywood and mill fabric. I'll add a bed of sand tomorrow.
 
Monday, July 12 View Page
2114 aborted its earlier set, so this is a July 5th backup that's doing ok.
 
Wednesday, July 14 View Page
Meanwhile, my 2183 Mendi has aborted its earlier set, but I have a side vine one within the leaves that survived the heat, and a slightly younger and smaller main vine one. Even though there's a crack in the stem/vine, I think I'll cull the side vine fruit because it's kind of ribbon, and not in a great location.
 
Wednesday, July 14 View Page
2145 McMullen survived the heat, but its blossom end turned to rubber and is shriveled up into a raisin.
 
Wednesday, July 14 View Page
1935 Jutras squash is doing ok after its adjustment.
 
Wednesday, July 14 View Page
The 1109 is a pretty emerald green and growing well.
 
Wednesday, July 14 View Page
The patch is pristine, but it's an insane amount of work to maintain all of these master gardener plants!
 
Saturday, July 17 View Page
2145 fruit
 
Monday, July 19 View Page
Dang it....I left the sheet off the 1935 and its west side got sunburned. I'm predicting it'll scab and fail to fill out. Ughhhhh
 
Wednesday, July 21 View Page
Look at that! A baby watermelon 4 feet out on the main, ha!
 
Wednesday, July 21 View Page
Meanwhile, in the auxiliary patch, the 1109 Jutras plant is filling out.
 
Wednesday, July 21 View Page
Look at that beautiful green 1109!!! Nice barrel shape!
 
Wednesday, July 21 View Page
The 3 marrow plants are looking glorious! Getting closer to pollination time!
 
Thursday, July 22 View Page
2145 McMullen growing awesomely....but its blossom nub turned to rubber and shriveled up after the heat wave. Hopefully it'll be ok.
 
Thursday, July 22 View Page
1935 jutras squash
 
Thursday, July 22 View Page
LOOK AT THAT BEAUTY!!!!
 
Thursday, July 22 View Page
Just as I predicted, the 1935 squash sunburn is stabbing over, and that right side isn't developing as fully. That's lame.
 
Saturday, July 24 View Page
2145 McMullen looking fabulous
 
Saturday, July 24 View Page
1930 Jutras chugging along
 
Saturday, July 24 View Page
Dag nabbit...the 2183 Mendi is aborting.....ugh. I maybe should've kept the one on the side vine....ughhh!
 
Tuesday, July 27 View Page
1935 Jutras squash is a pretty light green. That sunburned side is all cantalouped up and flat. Lesson learned. Ultra healthy plant
 
Tuesday, July 27 View Page
Yessssssss!!!!
 
Tuesday, July 27 View Page
Cutest thing in the WORLD!!!!
 
Wednesday, July 28 View Page
Had to perform a stem split surgery on the 1930 Jutras.
 
Thursday, July 29 View Page
Well, the 2114 Wallace was a tall wheel, and was about to fall over and pick itself, so I uprooted the vine and am growing it Cinderella style. Lame. Everyone else has an awesome barrel 2114, and I got the problem child....well, hopefully it'll be pretty.
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
1109 Jutras just keeps on growing! Leavescare ultra healthy on the 24x28 foot plant!
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
I'm totally obsessed with this baby watermelon!
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
I've got 4 field pumpkins going on 2 plants. So far, so good.
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
Marrows are newly pollinated.
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
2114 Wallace getting into gear now.
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
1935 is still green and growing. Id like it to be darker like last year's 1935, but it it what it is.
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
Dag nabbit....had to fillet this one 3 ways. Hope it works!
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
2552 Mendi plant....lovely!
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
The fruit is sort of funny looking. The heat dome phenomenon made its blossom nub shrink up and disappear inside!
 
Tuesday, August 3 View Page
Weird.....at least it didn't abort.
 
Saturday, August 7 View Page
Another big horse show weekend! Region 4 championships in Oregon.
 
Tuesday, August 10 View Page
Thos seems like a really nice tomato going! 9.44 LaRue
 
Tuesday, August 10 View Page
Long gourds are at the top finally!
 
Tuesday, August 10 View Page
My biggest of the 3 marrows.
 
Thursday, August 12 View Page
Have you ever seen a more sincere pumpkin patch? No, you haven't.
 
Sunday, August 15 View Page
Have I mentioned how obsessed I am with this cutie?
 
Sunday, August 15 View Page
I've got some young one gourd prospects!
 
Sunday, August 15 View Page
Well this is dumb....Baggs fp....ugh
 
Sunday, August 15 View Page
The 1109 Jutras has a new name: MEAN JOE GREEN!
 
Sunday, August 15 View Page
Hello big marrow!
 
Sunday, August 15 View Page
Big Tom says hi! 9.44
 
Friday, August 20 View Page
Well, my previous bushel gourd aborted, but I've got this good baby. Its a bit late, but I think I can get it to at least 250 pounds in the time left!
 
Friday, August 20 View Page
Well, my attempt at a big orange beauty isn't going so well...ugh.
 
Sunday, August 22 View Page
Meanwhile....this is awesome!
 
Wednesday, August 25 View Page
Nice field pumpkin prospect on the Rosquita!
 
Wednesday, August 25 View Page
Good long gourd prospect
 
Wednesday, August 25 View Page
The baby bushel is growing nicely!
 
Wednesday, August 25 View Page
Helllloooo beautiful!
 
Wednesday, August 25 View Page
Boo...disappointing.
 
Wednesday, August 25 View Page
Big Tom!
 
Thursday, August 26 View Page
2145
 
Thursday, August 26 View Page
2552
 
Thursday, August 26 View Page
2114
 
Thursday, August 26 View Page
1935 jutras squash
 
Thursday, August 26 View Page
1930 Jutras. Stem split surgery successfully...for now.
 
Thursday, August 26 View Page
MEAN JOE GREEN!!!
 
Friday, August 27 View Page
Big marrow is so cool and ginormous!
 
Friday, August 27 View Page
Mean Joe Green is so amazing!
 
Saturday, August 28 View Page
Jack and I framed up a greenhouse to give Mean Joe Green some late season protection.
 
Saturday, August 28 View Page
Mean Joe Green doesn't have any old tired leaves....remarkable!
 
Monday, August 30 View Page
Weighed s couple maters
 
Tuesday, August 31 View Page
Dang it. I lost a good young marrow. Over 140 pounds too...boo.
 
Friday, September 3 View Page
Long gourd is growing!
 
Friday, September 3 View Page
Ughhhhh..I lost my second marrow! This one was over 140 pounds. I only have one more left, and it's measuring BIGGER!
 
Saturday, September 4 View Page
Well dang it. My last marrow has the slightest fissure on the blossom end. My weighoff is 2 weeks away, but I'm cutting it. I can't risk not having this beast on my master gardener point tally.
 
Sunday, September 5 View Page
Here is the forests of the Pacific Northwest, I fell an old growth giant pumpkin.
 
Sunday, September 5 View Page
You're not going to believe this, but I witnessed an alien land her space ship IN MY PUMPKIN PATCH!
 
Sunday, September 5 View Page
There's a new COVID variant, and it's a powerful and unstoppable one called the 1109 Jutras. Watch out!
 
Sunday, September 5 View Page
Aloha from the Tobeck pumpkin patch!
 
Sunday, September 5 View Page
Wow! Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley stopped by my patch today because they heard I was totally rocking this year!
 
Sunday, September 5 View Page
Happy harvest! May you all get a personal best this year!
 
Friday, September 17 View Page
Big Tom is growing!
 
Saturday, September 18 View Page
45 pounds at our 1st weigh off of the year!
 
Saturday, September 18 View Page
New USA record at 142 pounds!
 
Saturday, September 18 View Page
114 pounds and the winner of field pumpkins!
 
Saturday, September 18 View Page
1452 pounds for the 2552 Mendi fruit and 10% heavy!
 
Monday, September 20 View Page
Big Tom is still growing!
 
Tuesday, September 21 View Page
Mean Joe Green says hi!
 
Saturday, September 25 View Page
Loaded for Seattle!
 
Saturday, September 25 View Page
Mine looks biiiig!
 
Saturday, September 25 View Page
The 2145 is now the 2535 Tobeck and 9% heavy!
 
Sunday, September 26 View Page
Go Big Tom, go!
 
Monday, September 27 View Page
Big Tom is a new personal best: 7.19 pounds!!!
 
Monday, September 27 View Page
Look at that!!!!
 
Friday, October 1 View Page
Harvest day for Mean Joe Green! Look at that flat bottom!
 
Saturday, October 2 View Page
The king of green with Mean Joe Green!
 
Saturday, October 2 View Page
Best win EVER!!!! Overall winner at Bauman's Farm and new Washington state record! 2030 pounds of green awesomeness AND 18% HEAVY!
 
Saturday, October 2 View Page
Have you ever seen a more gorgeous greenie?! No, you haven't!
 
Saturday, October 2 View Page
2030 Tobeck (1109 Jutras x 1935 Jutras)
 
Saturday, October 2 View Page
Team Tomato members who are KILLING IT this year: Jack LaRue, Scott Holub and myself.
 
Sunday, October 3 View Page
Ughhhhhh...measuring my massive bushel gourd and my hand got wet. I peeked behind it, and the stupid mice gnawed right into it!
 
Sunday, October 3 View Page
2114 Wallace is going to Half Moon Bay in CA. My biggest one, the 1930 Jutras went down, so this is my next biggest.
 
Sunday, October 3 View Page
The darn 1935 Jutras squash lost its green! It's my smallest and youngest, and I should take it to Terminator in Oregon, but I want to attend a new CA weighoff: Nut Tree.
 
Saturday, October 9 View Page
1393 pounds at Nut Tree got me into the Top 10 and it was 6% heavy. It isn't listed right on BP, but you can see from the photo it's 1393 pounds. Too bad it didn't stay green!
 
Saturday, October 9 View Page
My long gourd won at Nut Tree! 129.75 inches!
 
Monday, October 11 View Page
Half Moon Bay! I got 4th place and it weighed 1738 pounds, and went 16% heavy!!!
 
Wednesday, October 13 View Page
The two California pumpkins are sold and on display looking lovely!
 
Saturday, October 16 View Page
Guess what!? I broke my own USA record AGAIN! Here's the Tobeck 152.5 marrow!
 
Saturday, October 16 View Page
Look at that fatty!
 
Wednesday, October 20 View Page
Scott Holub and I declared our annual Fantasy Pumpkin picks early in the season, and as usual, I beat him soundly! We go with our top 4 growers, and my team grew an astounding 8502 pounds!!!
 
Wednesday, October 20 View Page
Thanks team (and myself too)! You had a great year!
 
Wednesday, October 20 View Page
I set a big goal in 2021 to be the #1 Master Gardener in the world. To be the Champion Master gardener, a grower must get official weights on 5 or more of the recognized 8 giant varieties. I worked harder than I ever have in the patch and despite a full time job and a big horse show schedule, I have amassed what I think may be the greatest GPC Master Gardener score of all time: 265.72 points! Now I await the official word after all the weighoffs post their results. The top 5 fruits from the 2021 Tobeck haul: 2030 pound squash, 152.5 pound marrow, 7.19 pound tomato, 1738 pound pumpkin, and 129.75 inch long gourd. Needless to say, I'M TIRED!
 
Wednesday, October 20 View Page
The top 5 fruits from the 2021 Tobeck haul: 2030 pound squash, 152.5 pound marrow, 7.19 pound tomato, 1738 pound pumpkin, and 129.75 inch long gourd.
 

 

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